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Contact(s): Carroll Schaal, DNR Lakes and Rivers section chief,, 608‑266-0502; Raechelle Belli, DNR communications,, 608-264-8942
April 16, 2019

MADISON, Wis. - Thirty-two counties in Wisconsin will receive more than $2.9 million in grant funding to improve water quality and aquatic habitat, reduce runoff, and reduce the spread of invasive species. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources announced the list of 58 grants that will receive funding as part of this year's surface water management grant cycle. Funding for surface water grants originates from part of the state tax on gasoline used in motor boats.

The DNR received 69 applications requesting over $3.4 million in funding. All applicants contribute at least 25% of the total project costs. Below is a summary of grant awards by grant type.

Grant Type

Grants Awarded

Award Amounts

Total Project Costs

AIS Established Control & Research




Research and Demonstration




Lake Management Plan Implementation




River Management




Healthy Lakes




Wetland & Shoreland Restoration




Total FY19 Management Grants




"Management grants are a great way to help groups move from the planning to implementation phase of projects," says Ashley Dooley, grants program manager. "Some great projects were proposed this year, many of which focus on improving water quality and habitat or the control and prevention of the spread of aquatic invasive species."

Lake management plan implementation grants fund practices recommended in lake plans. Green Lake Sanitary District will use funds to continue their effort to stabilize stream banks, install grassed waterways for several landowners and undertake other shoreline protection activities.

St. Croix County will implement recommendations from a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) plan to clean up the Lake St. Croix watershed. Minnesota and Wisconsin support the plan, which provides incentives to encourage the use of cover crops to reduce runoff, improve soil health, and prevent erosion as well as staffing an Implementation Lead Organizer.

Marinette County will investigate the construction and use of easily deployable curtain walls to create herbicide enclosures to control Eurasian water milfoil on Thunder Lake. If successful, these enclosures will improve the herbicide concentration exposure time on targeted plants, reduce impacts on nearby native plant communities, and greatly reduce the amount of herbicide needed to reach desired effects.

Healthy Lakes grants focus on improving natural habitat and water quality using several simple and inexpensive practices. The Chetek Lakes Protection Association will work on 13 properties to install 39 Healthy Lakes best management practices. Some of the properties suffered tornado damage in 2017 and funds will be used to help repair damaged shorelines. With 24 overall applications requesting over $226,000, the Healthy Lakes Program continues to grow with both new and returning applicants.

To see the full list of awards, visit and search "surface water grants." Links to awarded grants can be found on the right-hand side of the web page under "Related links" on a desktop computer or under the "Show more" dropdown on mobile devices.

Last Revised: Tuesday, April 16, 2019

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